Friday, December 22, 2006

trying to find my christmas spirit

I love Christmas...presents (buying more than anything),the tree, turkey, booze, friends, family, SUN!! Not sure why I am feeling flat this year. Perhaps I should have gone out and got the tree. That is always a fun thing to do. Perhaps I am just too tired. Went to bed at 8.30 last night and slept until 6 which is a looong sleep.

Perhaps it is because of the f******g rain and cold. Anyway, sorry to publish a downer but I just can't help it. I decided very early on not to do that in my blog but it is the best I can do today. I hope my next post is a little more inspiring and interesting.

Monday, December 04, 2006

more ..

Unique photo of the two of us together, if a little truncated
more action

A day at the races

Close to the action

Jonty organised a surprise day out on the Motukarara races! What a great day. We were very early and got ourselves a superb spot on the rail. Nicholas was amazing as he chilled out for about 6 hours with very little child entertainment. Being unprepared I wasn't able to ensure the usual raft of stuff was loaded in the boot but it was still great. We gave Nic the camera at one point which was fun. He was so funny asking all day when he could start 'following' his horse. Had to explain that you follow with your eyes... then when I went off to 'make a bet' he asked if I went home to 'make my bed' and when I he accompanied me to the outdoor tote, he asked if 'we were going to get a pet'...bloody funny.

This woman was amzing..did stunts on Lord of the rings as Liv Tylers stunt double

Jonty and I made a tiny bit of money and managed to end the day a few $'s up and that was after candy floss, a hot dog and a polar ice. Nic didn't like candy floss.

With the race book in my hand and plenty of opportunity to sit in the boot of the car watching the horses warm up, I made some excellent choices. We were surrounded by people we might not ever meet at any of the other activities we do and it was a good laugh. It was a great way to chill out in the month before Christmas.

More pics to follow...Blogger get your act together

Love the NB are our pics

Getting a good possie and a nice coffee...we weren't at the PieBin, just next door
South New Brighton School Kapa Haka group. Performed later and they were gorgeous
North Beach Surf Club - people we know - Hi Miffie
Looking for SantaHi to Nic from St Nic

Of course the library has a float but the pics didn't upload so will save them for another time. I was a bit tearful when they went past as I miss this stuff and they all looked so cool.

'The Shoes' are back ....what can this mean?

What to do?

Monday, November 27, 2006


Home again after another quick trip up to Auckland. This time I went with Alex and Pete to see U2. We had a perfect time. The concert was truely superb. Being the 4th time I have seen them I was not overwhelmed and amazed but I felt that every minute of the rain and wind was worth it. The clouds parted as they started so there was nothing to detract from the gig. The lighting we sensational and of course the political messages intense. What more would you expect? Bono's voice was velvet, beautiful.

Although we were general admission, we managed to sneak in to the stand and just hung out on the stairs for the entire show. Found ourselves next to the NZ music corporate box. Spent most of the show about 30cm away from Scribe(circled in black in the photo below). He loved opening act and enjoyed the first few songs of U2 until someone lit of the doobies and everything went quiet from there. Their dinner smelt nice. Oscar Kightley and Scribe left at some point not to return. Fiona McDonald was animated when she spoke but was contemplative, appreciative and quite for most of the show. She sucked on a bottle of water. Respect. Alex and Pete were behind me and saw all kinds of other stuff that I missed. Made the night even more interesting. We stood where the pink blob is. See how wet everyone is, well that was us too.

When the lights went down before the show lights flickered in the audience and being a 30 year veteran of outdoor concerts I was impressed with the early arrival of the lighters. About 30 seconds later, I realised it was cell phones...people taking photos. So I got mine out and took some too. Got one of Scribes foot. Nikes. I txt'd for poverty and all that. I was so impressed with all the phones further in to the show.

Well worth the wait and the cost and the rain. Having a ball with Alex and Pete was the icing on the cake.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

nic's show pics

One of the many vintage machines that captured my attention. Love these things most of all.Chasing sheep at the end of th day...all I wanted to do was touch one, just one but all 200 started running and running....


non-beach activity

Yes we do venture inland on occasion and with the recent A and P Show featuring on the Christchurch social calendar, we have had a bit of country lately. Nic had been invited to visit Nicki and Andea's new foal. They like the foal to experience a lot of the things that might upset a horse in its life. So, along with plastic bags and kicking buckets, small, noisey and unpredictable children are desirable. Can't often say that. So we popped out after work the other night to meet the new baby who at 9 days old was stunningly cute. Nic, who had been bursting with excitement all day was a little ho hum but he did do the things required so all was well. We also left behind the red balloon he got at the show as tht is another thing the foal needs to experience. Enjoyed a lovely glass of local Kaituna Valley Pinot Gris and Nic got goosey playing with Cougar the cat. It was a lovely relaxed way to end the day. Everytime I visit Nicki's I think how much I would love to live in the quiet of the country with space and vistas but underneath I know that I need to be nearer to the coast. Mind you, it could be something I have to experience in my life so you never know.

Monday, November 20, 2006

catch up

Firstly, apologies to anyone who makes a regular swing by the blog. My brain has been too full to find space to string together an intelligable entry or two. The last couple of weeks have been an amalgam of beach visits, work - went to Auckland for a few days - Christmas shopping and social events and more. The most disappointing thing has been the super crap weather or rather a lack of consistancy in the weather. I am ready for summer now please.

Jonty and I have become addicted to computer scrabble and it is not pretty. Wont go in to the details but needless to say there has been fierce competition and almost late for work moments. I feel ok about this as I know we will move on from this as we have with all our other computer based addictions.

This could be a hugely long entry but I dont want to bore so will just throw in some highlights and a few pics. We have had a few weekend days at Taylors. We took Olivia one day to give Ruth a bit of break having had two chicken pox children in a row. The children don't seem to notice the cold much. Not often Nic makes a nice face for the camera. Got some lovely pics of Olivia.
The following weekend we were there again with Jonty's family, supporting them as J and R were competing in the TM to Sumner race. Again, another cold day. Both did really well. Nice to have all the visitors at the bach. of all ages with lots of energy and love for the beach.
This will do for this post, Nic is jumping around the room trying to get attention and I really should be making the lunches and getting him dressed so I will find some time to come back later today and write another post. The sun is out!! Long may that last. Have a good day

Monday, October 30, 2006 the seed of growth

mmm, forgot to talk about this. Well, I am embracing a bit of change at work and although I am not growing yet, at least the seed is planted. Enjoying watching the change in the garden. I took one of my beautiful roses to work for my office...lovely, fragrant, mezmerising.

The shoes that got they are...can't talk about it yet...too sad.

out and about

The weeks are just roaring by right now, cant seem to get my thoughts together to catch up. Enjoying not working weekends even though they were only every three. This weekend we decided to make the most of the lovely weather before the Antarctic blast arrived. Funny what you can fit in to a few days when the threat of freezing rain is impending.

On a whim we headed up to Flaxmere garden near Harwarden to check out the Art in a Garden event. We were nice and early so there weren't a whole lot of people there when we arrived. It was a stunning place that had a real feel to it. The art was lovely and we desperately wanted to buy some but nothing worked for us. Fun looking though. Chatted to some lovely people. Plenty of North Canterbury farmer types which is always entertaining...walking cliches... Check out our pics

We discovered a really cute little cafe in Waikari on the way home. Nice meld of cofee, jewellery, art and other lovely things. Was blowing a howler.

Been on a couple of fun bike rides the last two weekends. Firstly the Little River Rail Trail...a word of advice, dont be doing this in a big bad head wind...not pleasant. Kind of takes the fun out of it. Ruth, Simon and family were on the tandem and Nic fell asleep on the back of Jonty's bike. That child, can't get him to go near a bed but not fussy about the back of a bike, motorbike or back pac. Will put some pics on sometime, can't get them on now.

Yesterday I was dreaming of a gentle city ride with a cafe pitstop along the way but we ended up in Bottle Lake looking for tadpoles and biking up a storm. It was great. Another entry for another day.

Saturday, October 21, 2006


Well, I started on the simplicity road by putting some clothes on 'trade me' to get them out of my life and to try and help me get some funds to buy new ones. Doing this meant that I had to face the fact that I have some gorgeous clothes that I will never fit again, or by the time I do, they will be no longer appealing. That was the first tiny step. Another big step was leaving my old work for the last time last night. Heading for a new job, clean slate, empty office. Here's hoping for a simpler life.

What not to wear... when I was in Warworth with Karen we went to a WNTW evening at the Mahurangi Hall. What a fun night. Jackie O'Fee from Signature style in Auckland entertained and educated us about style and image. I took notes ...

Women who have style or are stylish

  • interpret fashion in to their look - they aren't slaves to fashion but pick out bits that suit them
  • are not scared to change their image...keep updating hair styles and make up - good advice, I think
  • know what works for them, what looks good, which colours suit
  • know their best feature and work it!
  • are well groomed - nails, makeup etc
  • remember the details - shoes should match an outfit etc
  • are confident
  • don't spend a lot of money - they know where to shop.
This session was one of the prompts to get me to take a good hard look at my miserable 'wearable' wardrobe and get things out of there. So now I am working out how to proceed. What not to wear actually.

SALE! A word I love. The lovely Jackie discussed the traps that we fall into when we see that word emblazoned on any clothing shop window. I sat there cringing and mentally ticking off all those sale bargains languising in my wardrobe. In fact I have so many there is no room for the clothes I do wear. Tragic. are Jackie's tips . 3 questions to ask yourself when you spot that bargain
1. Would I buy this full price?
2. What will it work with?
3. Do I love it?

Keep a sale list of items that aren't must but wants and would be good to pick up in a suit perhaps.

Other tips
Throw stuff out - but keep your designer one offs
Read fashion magazines - 'Simply You' and the Aussie 'InStyle' were recommended because clothes are not on models.


Change - is the seed of growth

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

positive thinking

Home again after a great week of holidaying on the Kowhai coast. My next few entries will be about that. Nothing earth shatteringly great happened, just a great week of hanging out with Karen, Anna, Justin and Nic plus a weekend treat visit from lovely Jonathan. It was real soul food and I have come home very energised and relaxed.

Karen and I managed a couple of weekend escapades on our own. First visit was to the Matakana Village Farmers' Market which was lovely. Small, very middle class and bloody expensive. The photos on the link say it all. Very sumptuous. We did hoe into a stunning whitebait patty on white bread with a squirt of lemon. I bought some lovely blue cheese from the Art of Cheese which is a cafe in Puhoi about 20km south of was creamy and delicious. If the cheese is an indicator, the cafe is well worth a visit. Karen picked up some shiney red peppers and a red onion or two. We tasted all the things to taste including some very grassy olive oil.

We also disappeared to the Ascension Vinyard for a girlie catch up lunch and ate up a storm and got a bit tipsy at a tasting session. Heaps of fun and highly recommended if you find yourself in Warkworth on a Saturday.

Out and about today I came across some things that I thought worth sharing. I guess you could call them affirmations but I detest the word. So I am thinking of using the terms 'thoughts'. Very original I know but I thought that by publishing one of these little thoughts with each blog, I might be able to energise myself and make some positive changes. Kind of like enhancing my life a little bit, you might like them too.

First one: SIMPLIFY... clear the clutter! I will keep you informed of progress in my next entry.

Saturday, October 14, 2006


Just a few holiday snaps. Algies Bay blissful afternoon in the sun

Friday, October 13, 2006

the zoo

After a fairly uneventful but enjoyable flight to Auckland Karen, Anna, Nicholas and I took ourselves to the Auckland Zoo for the afternoon. Having seen it countelss times on tv the level of anticipation was high...that was for me. I think it is one of the nicest zoos around and since my last visit there has been huge growth and development. Nicholas and Anna were very excited to be there but I am guessing it was less for the animals than the novelty. However, it was great and our 2 hour whizz around was fun. We went mainly for the African animals which were well worth it. Being a Wednesday we were blessed with lots of room and empty space. I was particularly taken with the signs and displays and the conservation messages and got some snaps to take home for adding to my work collection of interesting ideas.

I'm writing this from Karen and Justy's place on their computer so not sure how the photos are going to go. Before I try that, I just remembered a funny thing that happened at ChCh Int. Airport...we were in the duty free touching but not buying and Nic was roaring around checking out the stuff and I heard his increadibly loud voice off in the distance yell 'look mummy GIN! I found some gin' . I laughed...thing is I don't drink gin but we have a tiny bottle of Sapphire sitting on the bench at home...made a good story for everyone int he shop to tell.

This poor lion seems to have a spot of hayfever...he is sneezing

Monday, October 09, 2006

Sunday, October 01, 2006


Life over the past month and a bit has been hugely tense with all the tension and changes at work. At last I am starting to feel relaxed again and am hugely tired. I just want to sleep but now that I have a new job, sleeping is alluding me again. Oh well, heading north soon for a week of R and R so will hang out for that.

Yesterday we went to Little River for lunch for Jonty's birthday. The main motivation was the Little River Gallery where we have often stopped and fondled the art with our eyes...yesterday we intended to buy some but it didn't happen. However, we did have a very relaxing time over lunch and lazing about, visiting the playground and generally chilling out. Got some nice pic's for the album.

Nic on the old carriage at the end of the Little River railway line

Kind of posing in the stainless steel hammock that was for sale.

The last few times I have been to the gallery there has been some lovely work by the artist Hannah Kidd for sale. I wish I had bought something as there is only the elephant left and it is $15,500. It is huge and the head turns every minute or so. Nic is memerised by it and would love to have it at home.

The material used is recycled corrugated iron, bashed flat and welded. I love the houses particularly and will keep an eye out for more pieces like this selection.

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

weekend words

no photos just words - backwards - my weekend
warm evening, planting strawberries-blueberries-helebores, mulching, me and Nic fence painting, dripping paint, talking on the phone, digging, cheese toasties, breakfast with the family, washing, toast, helium balloons. Party, wine, fish and mash, new people, kiss, lipstick, best clothes, playing at Anne and Tim's, lunch, playground, coffee and treats, vinyl shopping with Ruth and Ben and Olivia, trailer, 'bye, have fun', french toast for Jonty, cuddles for Nicholas, Spring, eyes open.


Wednesday, August 30, 2006

coogee coup

Jonty's surprise weekend to 'Tauranga' turned out to be a Coogee beach getaway. What fun I had planning and keeping that a secret. We had a fab time just hanging out in Coogee and around the place. We ate out every night at a variety of reasonably priced retaurants including 'A fish called Coogee'. I had marlin - first time, lovely.

We walked from Coogee to Bronte along the coastal track which was a 2 and half hour round trip after a spell on the beach at Bronte drinking a terrible coffee. I just love the way the Aussies go to the beach and just chat and hang out. Only kids and speedo clad surf life savers in the water. Jonty took a dip at Coogee - not in speedos.
Waverley Cemetery ...perched on the cliff top, it has a fantastic multi million dollar view, yay the dead people!

On our first morning we thought there was some 'thing' happening but it turns out that it is just that lots of people just hang out and chat at the beach. Very cool. We did that too but just talked to each other, had our lunch, did some reading and checking out the locals.

We stayed a boutique hotel called Dive - which is a funny name for a lovely place but you get it when you see the photo. Our room was gorgeous...facing the beach, huge with a king sized bed and the most sumptuous curtains. It was pretty noisy in the wee small hours but you expect that with the student bar down the way but it was fine.
Our hotel is the little grey one in the middle of the photo.

Markets - Paddington. Having been to heaps of markets I think it is one of the best with genuine gorgeous things. We bought a few bits and pieces. Sydney Fish Market was a real find. It was fun being one of the very few white English speaking people there. We had some very tasty morsels and watched the hubbub from the water front. Bought some delicious strawberries to eat back at the hotel. Yum, roll on summer.

That's it really..Bloody great!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

nic's pics

One day a few weeks ago I let Nic take the camera and have a play before pre-school. He had fun working out how to get the images he wanted. Here are some of them.

A flattering image of me

The fire place was a favourite topic

Hippo bowl

The cupboard where the vitamin C tablets live

Cups on the bench